Artist couple ‘inspired by the Fens’ in riverside exhibition
- Credit: Karin Paddock
A couple who are heavily influenced by the unique Fenland landscape have launched a new exhibition in Ely’s Babylon Gallery to showcase their work.
Artists and husband and wife duo Carol and Bob Banks launched their exhibition, named ‘Fenscapes’ on Thursday September 30.
Carol, a jewellery maker and Bob, a painter have chosen the theme of Fenland landscapes to run throughout the exhibition.
On the gallery walls is a series of 34 retrospective works by Bob, including oil paintings and chalk pastel pieces of Wicken Fen, Anglesey Abbey and interiors from Ely Cathedral.
On the plinths, Carol exhibits her handmade silver and gold painted jewellery inspired by nature.
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All of the jewellery and framed paintings are for sale, as well as a collection of 18 unframed prints and cards.
Bob said: “We both have our own studios and keep our practices separate, but we often bounce ideas off of one another over the dinner table which is very helpful.”
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Since moving from London in 2008, Carol and Bob have used the Fens as inspiration for their artwork.
Carol was born in Soham and having always loved nature, uses the natural beauty of the area for inspiration for most of her jewellery.
Her pieces are dictated by the shapes and textures of natural materials such as bark, leaves and seed heads.
Carol now supplies for the National Trust, Anglesey Abbey and Sutton Hoo.
Bob originally worked exclusively in pastels, but has recently switched to oil paints.
Using the local landscape as a stimulus, he focuses on small details such as textures, colour and reflections in the water.
“I use painting as a way to decompress from my busy job in Animation and Carol now makes her jewellery full time,” said Bob.
“We moved to the Fens from London thinking we’d have a quieter way of life – we're now busier than ever!”
Bob and Carol will be at the gallery most days throughout the exhibition speaking to visitors as they work to give an understanding of the process behind each piece.
Chief Executive Claire Somerville said: “It’s wonderful to have them working in the space during an exhibition."
‘Fenscapes’ is on now until Saturday October 24 and the gallery is open Tuesday to Sunday, 12pm-4pm with free entry.